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Technology and the state

Uploaded by ashdavies on Nov 05, 2001

'Technology, above all else, has changed the nature of the state, not least in terms of making boundaries permeable'


In discussing this statement I am going to discover whether technology is responsible for changing the nature of the state, but more specifically whether it has made boundaries more permeable. Although the statement holds the assumption that technology is the main factor of change, after reading several texts I have come to the conclusion that this belief is true, be it directly as a technological innovation or indirectly by how these innovations may influence other means of penetrating borders. The development of new technologies has for the best part of 150 years had a tremendous effect on society in general, and the world as a whole, from the development of the steam engine to the discovery of nuclear power, states have never been able to react the same. Of course, major technological advancement has been a phenomenon witnessed more frequently by the west, which of course initially made conflict between these countries more probable but ultimately more devastating, as vividly portrayed by WWI and WWII.

I will begin by discussing the first major age of change and development, in this case, the industrial revolution. It now seems that the industrial revolution heralded the beginning of a new system that would concentrate on continuing development and heightening technology, not least when the military could find uses for them. Industrialization in the mid-19th Century also brought a new way of social classification, the traditional way of owning land to increase status had been replaced by capitalism where it seemed the more you earned the higher in society you could climb. This was an incentive for industry owners to seek greater efficiency through development.

A number of factors had greatly changed the way the military could react by the beginning of the First World War. The birth of manufacturing had meant that uniforms, boots, guns could all be produced by the thousand. America had emerged as the forerunners of manufacturing and their civil war is described as 'the first industrialized war'. For the state it would be inevitable that they should get involved in industry because developments in industry brought about significant military applications.

For instance, the steam engine had brought trains, important for industry and trade as they could transport goods quicker, but also important for the military. They could now mobilize troops much easier than...

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Uploaded by:   ashdavies

Date:   11/05/2001

Category:   Science And Technology

Length:   7 pages (1,599 words)

Views:   1504

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